Introduction: Fuzz Pedal
Once you have your guitar and learned how to play in time with a metronome, the only thing left to do is rock out. However, as you might have noticed, no matter how hard you rock, it just does not sound right. That is because you are missing something. As many guitarists will tell you, the secret to rocking out is actually fuzz. Before you can do any serious rocking out, you are going to need to build a fuzz pedal. Fortunately, making your own fuzz pedal is a lot easier than it may sound.
Step 1: Go Get Stuff
You will need:
- (x2) 2N3904 NPN Small Signal Transistor (Model: 2N3904 | Catalog #: 276-2016)
- (x2) 100K Ohm 1/4-Watt Carbon Film Resistor (Model: 271-1347 | Catalog #: 271-1347)
- (x2) 10K Ohm 1/4-Watt Carbon Film Resistor (Model: 271-1335 | Catalog #: 271-1335)
- 22 uF Electrolytic Capacitor (Model: 272-1026 | Catalog #: 272-1026)
- 0.1µF 50V Hi-Q Ceramic Disc Capacitor (Model: 272-135 | Catalog #: 272-135)
- 0.01µF 50V 20% Hi-Q Ceramic Disc Capacitor (Model: 272-131 | Catalog #: 272-131)
- 10K-Ohm Horizontal-Style Trimmer (Model: 271-282 | Catalog #: 271-282)
- 5K-Ohm Linear Taper Potentiometers (Model: 271-1714 | Catalog #: 271-1714)
- 100K-Ohm Audio-Taper Potentiometer (Model: 271-1722 | Catalog #: 271-1722)
- Multipurpose PC Board with 417 Holes (Model: 276-150 | Catalog #: 276-150)
- SPST Flatted Metal Lever Toggle Switch (Model: 275-634 | Catalog #: 275-634)
- 1/4" Mono Panel-Mount Audio Jack (Model: 274-255 | Catalog #: 274-255)
- Hexagonal Control Knob (Model: 274-407 | Catalog #: 274-407)
- Fully Insulated 9V Battery Snap Connectors (Model: 270-325 | Catalog #: 270-325)
- Enercell® Alkaline 9 Volt Battery (Model: 23-853 | Catalog #: 23-853)
- DPDT specialty stomp switch
- Sturdy metal project box
Step 2: Mark
On the top surface of your project box, measure in one inch from one of the shorter edges. Next, make two marks that are 1/3 and 2/3 of the way between the edges of the shorter distance. These will be for the potentiometers
Measure in one inch from the opposite side of the front of the case. Make another mark that is 1/2 way between the two edges. This hole is for the stomp switch.
On the side of the case make two marks for audio jacks where you would like, so long as they won't interfere with any of the other parts that will be installed.
Following the same logic as the audio jack marks, make one last mark for a toggle power switch.
Step 3: Drill
Drill the two holes for the potentiometers with a 9/32" drill bit.
Drill a 1/8" pilot hole for the stomp switch and then widen it to 1/2".
Drill two 3/8" holes for the audio jack.
Finally, drill a 1/4" hole for the power switch.
Step 4: Solder
Build the circuit as specified in the schematic.
For now, don't worry about attaching the potentiometers, stomp switch, audio jack or power switch to the circuit. These will be wired in later, after they have been installed in the case.
Step 5: Wires
Attach a black wire to the center pin of the 5K potentiometer and a red wire to the pin on the right.
Attach a black wire to the left pin on the 100K potentiometer and red wires to the two other pins.
Step 6: Audio Wires
Attach a black wire to the ground lug on each of the audio jacks. Attach red wires to the signal lugs on each of the jacks.
Step 7: Install
Install the audio jacks and the DPDT stomp switch into the metal case.
Step 8: Wire
Solder each of the red audio wires to one of the center lugs on the DPDT switch.
While you're at it, solder together one set of outer pins.
Step 9: Attach
Attach the potentiometers to the circuit board as specified in the schematic. Keep in mind that one of the potentiometer wires will be later attached to the DPDT switch.
Step 10: Cut Brackets
Cut out two brackets using the template file attached to this step. They both should be cut out of non-conductive material.
I cut out the larger base bracket out of a thin cork mat and the smaller potentiometer bracket out of 1/8" rubber.
Step 11: Put in the Pots
Line up the rubber bracket with the holes in the case and install the potentiometers into the case.
Step 12: More Wiring
Wire the remaining potentiometer wire in line with the audio-out jack's wire on the DPDT switch.
Connect a wire from the remaining DPDT terminal lug to the audio-in point on the circuit board.
Step 13: Power Switch
Connect the red wire from the 9V battery connector to the center terminal of the power switch. Connect another red wire to either of the switch's outer terminals.
Step 14: Switch
Install the power switch into the case.
Wire the black wire from the 9V clip to ground on the circuit board and the free red wire from the switch to +9V on the circuit board.
Step 15: Power
Plug in the 9V battery.
Step 16: Case Closed
Install the large insulator panel between the circuit board and the bottom plate of the casing.
Screw the case shut.
Step 17: Knobs
Attach your knobs onto the potentiometers.
Step 18: Plug and Play
Plug your guitar to audio-in and your amp to audio-out. Then, rock out.